Current Bears’ roster reflects past success

Photo Courtesy of ESPN

Photo Courtesy of ESPN

Pavan Pandurangi, Staff Writer

With two-thirds of the NFL season to go, Bears fans are anxiously waiting to see if their favorite team will continue to perform the best it has in recent years. Coming out of week seven, the Bears have amassed a 4-3 record. Led by new head coach Matt Nagy and quarterback Mitch Trubisky,  the fresh Bears lineup has sparked a glimmer of hope for Chicago natives, as could be seen by powerful scrimmage pressure by linebacker Khalil Mack against the Green Bay Packers in their first regular season game. As Bears enthusiasts look into the season’s future, a flashback to historic performances by the Chicago based football team underlines the prominence of this year’s team.

Under coach Mike Ditka, the 1985 Bears proved to be superior to most of the NFL teams, ending the season with the near-undefeated record of 14-2. Their losses against the Vikings and Rams did not stop them, as the team, led by football hall of famer Walter Payton won went on to clinch the Super Bowl title for the first time in the franchise’s history.

The Bears had a stretch of bad luck, not reaching the Super Bowl again until 2006, this time being led by Lovie Smith. Having only coached the Bears for 2 years, Chicago fans did not expect much of him, as they thought he needed more time to adapt to the team to lead them to the success Ditka had. Smith proved to be as determined as Ditka, wrapping up the regular season with an unexpected 13-3 record. The Bears reached the Super Bowl for the first time in 20 years, this time ready to compete against their neighbors: the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts, who also ended the season with a similar record, were able to finish stronger than the Bears, beating them by a comfortable 12 points to end the game with the score of 29-17.

This year’s Bears roster has positively impacted their performance lately, with an offensive lead in Trubisky improving their passing yards two-fold from last year. Trubisky’s consistent connections with receiver Anthony Miller, amassing over 250 yards, led the Bears to victories early in the season, while Nagy’s playmaking calls with running back Tarik Cohen led the team to victories against later teams. Trubisky is shaping up to be the next Mike Tomczak, reeling in passing yards every game and starting the season strong. Alongside him, Nagy’s attitude and motivation reflects that of Ditka’s and Tarik Cohen’s footwork is mirroring that of Walter Payton. The first third of the season has given the team motivation to relive the iconic moments of 1986 and 2006. The reformed roster has given Chicago fans hope that the Bears will proceed to enter the playoff and win the Super Bowl.

The 2018 Bears are the closest Chicago has come to retaining the title that Ditka worked so hard to earn in 1986. Fans hope for the 32-year drought to end following this season. The Bears are first in their division and will need positive results in their future games against the Vikings, Giants and Rams to help to secure their position in the playoffs. As the past lingers in the minds of all Chicago fans, they rest their hopes on leading offensive players like Trubisky and aggressive defensive players like Mack.